Thursday, January 14, 2010

happy moo year.

the year was 1999. with 2000 fast approaching, and inspired by some friends' more admirable eating habits, i decided to stop eating all red meat (pork included) in the new year (incidentally enough, new year's 2000 was when i had my first drink when my late friend Bhuwan slipped a little something-something into my vanilla coke...#@$%$*^).

so why the shift in eating habits? religious, health, environmental were the primary motivations. this was even potentially intended a path to vegetarianism. the easiest way to describe it to people though was that i didn't eat mammals.

the immediate effect? eating much healthier (less fast food in college). honestly, it was not a rough transition, given that growing up on a regular diet of indian food (dhal, rice, subji) my family did not eat much meat in the house anyways. i started re-introducing myself to fish (beyond Captain D's), and eating LOTS more poultry. lots of people would point out that birds were mammals. i would quickly point out their denseness, as birds lay eggs, and are avians (duh!).

fast-forward several years years later:
-i was no longer religious (still very much definitely interested in religion though), NOT as healthy as i could be, but certainly still environmentally conscious.
-i had traveled the world near and far and missed out on all sorts of interesting culinary treats (my contemporary hero Anthony Bourdain would be sorely disappointed).
-i was even dating a Chinese girl (well, as Chinese as i am Indian =), whose frustration was growing with my self-imposed food restrictions.

the only reason i still did not eat mammals? it was a streak.

the only thing i had done longer was read comic books. but the situations above-described (domestic and abroad) had me re-thinking this policy. i would stick to my streak, but limit it to a nice, round, 10-years.

it's now 2010. i "delivered the decade" (more than a certain company of mine can say).

did i immediately eat a Junior Bacon Cheeseburger (as i had jokingly mentioned)? no thanks. i can't afford to put myself out of commission right now (from what i know, the stomach stops producing certain enzymes over the years, so getting back on the wagon can be difficult/painful). i've slowly introduced some pork, and a LIMITED quantity of beef back into my diet (one slice in a turkey sandwich), but i still hesitate. for any meat consumption, my intent is to try to make more responsible/sustainable purchases. but it's going to take time (a whole lot of precious time).

so while all the rest of you saps are quitting things in the new year, i now ask the age-old question:

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